The motherland, where I come from, it is vast expanses of land made up of agricultural farms, and forest of coniferous and diceduous trees tightly woven together. With these surroundings inspiration comes easily. It is the perfect place to get in touch with our core values. Nature with all of her weaknesses and strengths can sometimes flourish or fade in the most predominant ways.
– Francine Plante Pokio
An engaging and multidisciplinary artist, originating from Ville-Marie.
The correspondence was exchanged in 2018.
Many creators see nature as a source of inspiration. Here are just a few examples.
In virtual art, the artist Diane Auger explores the animal totems of the Aboriginals, the link between reality and the imaginary, and our relationship with the wilderness. Joanne Poitras, of Témiscamienne origins, utilizes and reproduces elements of nature (hills and valleys, rocks and trees). Her paintings of landscapes highlight her multifaceted visions of vast expanses. On his side, Edmond Vincent, an Algonquin artist, creates beautiful scenes inhabited entirely by nature from a spiritual point of view. The trees, the animals and other woodland elements are represented in a way as if he seeks to reflect the spirit of things rather than their physical appearance.
Author Jeanne-Mance Delisle has, among other things, written a compilation entitled “Nouvelles d’Abitibi”. This story introduces larger-than-life characters from the region: poachers, gold prospectors, explorers and outsiders. In “La bête rouge”, the story leads us to an abitibienne forest engulfed in flames.
On the musical side, the poet Raoul Duguay, with his greatly celebrated song “La bitte à Tibi”, has somehow created a local anthem. He recounts hardship, poverty and the connection with nature in a childhood story of days spent playing outdoors, picking blueberries and playing hockey on frozen lakes.
Moi je viens d’un pays
Qui a un ventre en or
Moi je viens d’un pays
Où c’que le poisson mord
(I come from a country
that has stomach of gold
I come from a country
where the fish bite)
– Raoul Duguay
Excerpt from «La bittt à Tibi», album Alllô tôulmônd (1975)
The singer-songwriter-composer Richard Desjardins also sings of Abitibi-Témiscamingue, its people, its forests, its animals and its lakes are mentioned in many of his songs. Also, his cinematic documentary, in collaboration with Robert Monderie points out regional issues, such as the logging industry in “L’erreur boréale (1999)”, Mining industry in “Noranda (1984)” and “Trou Story (2011).”